- No perpetual-license option
- Premium assets aren’t cheap
- Interface can be overwhelming at times
The face tools in Smart Portrait are more fun than practical, though they may be useful to portrait photographers if used judiciously. When I ramped up the Happiness slider on most pictures, the result was more like a forced smile than a natural one, though it can be effective if you don’t turn it all the way up. There are also sliders for Anger, and Surprise, which were surprisingly effective. The algorithm also failed to de-age the neck on some subjects. An interesting option is Retain Unique Details; if you uncheck this, your subject approaches a Barbie-doll appearance. One slider, Placement, can nudge the face selection box right or left, though it didn’t do much in my test shots. The Light Direction slider, when used judiciously, can work to good effect. The Gaze slider moves the eyes subtly, but the head direction tool wasn’t convincing in my test photos.
The Colorize tool, though impressive, failed to bring alive the hands as well as the head in an old photograph. Still, it’s clearly labeled as beta, so you can’t take points off for that. I had better luck with Adobe Photoshop 23.4.2 Crack Elements’ Colorize tool. On a few test photos of streets and beaches, it did nothing, but it convincingly colorized a snowy reindeer scene. The neural tools do have a Before-and-After button, but I wish it had a side-by-side view.
The final neural filter I’ll discuss is something that’s been in other photo software for a few years, notably in Cyberlink PhotoDirector. It’s the Style Transfer effect, which makes your photo look like the work of an artist such as Picasso or van Gogh. It’s a 176MB download at the time of testing. There’s a good selection of looks, with over 30 to choose from already. You can not only choose the strength of the effect, but also preserve color, focus on the subject, change brush size, and blur the background. It’s a good implementation of the effect type.
Though it’s now packed with drawing and font tools, Adobe Photoshop 23.4.2 Crack got its start as a photo editing and printing application, and it remains the most powerful photo editing software. Along with its completely photography-focused sibling, Lightroom, Photoshop offers the most support for raw camera files, and the most in correction and effects. From removing or adding objects with content-aware tools to lens-profile-based geometry correction to histogram adjustments to stained-glass effect filters, Photoshop has it all. It’s impossible to cover every feature here, but I’ll take a closer look at a couple of the standout tools.
For a while, Photoshop had been trailing software such as Skylum Luminar in handling skies in photos. Replacing a drab sky with a beautiful one used to be a many-step process involving manual masking and layers. Photoshop’s Sky Replacement tool is instant and awesome. You get many choices, ranging from pleasant to dazzling, and you can adjust the position, edge, brightness, and temperature of your chosen sky replacement.
Unlike some tools, which simply try to detect a horizon, Photoshop can handle images with foreground objects that block the sky, like the obelisk in the image above. You can move the sky around to get the best placement and even adjust the lighting and color of the foreground to better match the new sky. In the example, you can see how the pavement reflection changes to match the sky color.
The AI-enhanced Lens Blur tool creates a more color-aware effect than its non-AI predecessor. The old lens blur is in the left image above, and the newer one is at the right. The newer tool also gives you control over bokeh shapes, which would be created by the blades of a camera iris in real lens blur. Photoshop’s simulated effects include a choice of polygons from triangles to octagons, and you can also adjust the blade curvature and rotation.
A few years ago, an app called Anticrop (since renamed to Recrop) gained momentary celebrity in the tech world. Why? As its name suggests, it lets change you change the aspect ratio of an image by adding to the sides instead of simply cutting them off. The Photoshop tool works similarly. Just check the Content-Aware box while using the crop tool, and the app fills in anything in the crop selection that falls outside your image’s boundaries. Content-Aware Crop resembles the Content-Aware Fill tool. Like that tool, Content-Aware crop only works well with patterned image content, such as a forest, pavement, sea, or sky. It’s particularly convincing with skies. Note in the image below all the extra clouds generated in the sky on the right to create a more spacious square composition.
Content-Aware Fill has also been updated, with an interface that shows you what source content it’s using to replace the object you want to remove. You can edit the source area, but the program does a remarkable job with no help. It has improved over last year’s version, now identifying objects that shouldn’t be part of the fill pattern.
Face detection has reached an increasingly high level of accuracy in recent years, to the point of recognizing individual facial features, as well as whole faces. Face-Aware Liquify resembles a feature we first saw demonstrated by Adobe at Apple’s iPad Pro launch event in the app called Adobe Fix. Face-Aware Liquefy tool lets you convincingly transform facial expressions, turning, for example, an RBF into a smile.
This brilliant tool finds facial features like eyes and mouths and gives you the ability to manipulate them with sliders for resizing the eyes, nose, face width, and jawline. You can even edit the eyes independently with Face-Aware Liquefy. A chain icon lets you either lock together editing of both a subject’s eyes or edit them separately.
You can apply some very flattering changes, or some ridiculously unflattering ones, as you can see in my test images. For me, the coolest part of this feature is that the resulting image still looks human. It’s not like simply smearing a portrait with the old-fashioned, face-unaware Liquify tool. Note the smile I’ve added.
One of the hottest features of Photoshop is camera-shake reduction. The tool analyzes the photo to find the path of shake motion, and then aligns the shifted pixels. It sounds simple, but it’s harder to get right than it may seem. This is because the path won’t be the same everywhere in the photo unless you shook it exactly along a single plane, which is highly unlikely. You can use the tool’s best guess or select a region (or regions) in which you want the blur trace to be estimated.
You can also adjust Blur Trace Bounds, Smoothing, and Artifact Suppression—the last two let me create a less sharpened-looking result. I’d love to see a simple effect-strength adjustment like you get with Smart Sharpen (which, by the way, has a Reduce Noise slider). Shake Reduction is not a panacea, but it’s a finer effect than what you get from even the Smart Sharpen tool. If the subject is simply out of focus, it won’t help you; a simply blurry subject won’t be fixed.
Camera Raw Features
Adobe Photoshop 23.4.2 Crack module appears when you open raw camera files like Canon’s CR2 and Nikon’s NEF. It seems to become more of a full photo editing tool on its own with every Photoshop update. It’s become sort of a Lightroom without the slick workflow features. For example, it lets you make local hue adjustments, rather than having to change the hue values for the whole image. It even includes the Subject Select and masking tools of the main program. The tool lets you have more than one adjustment panel open, and you can switch between vertical and horizontal filmstrip thumbnail views. You can also create presets based on images’ ISO settings and do panorama merges from a right-click.
Photoshop offers several advanced capabilities in its Camera Raw module, including a geometry correction tool called Upright. This lets you fix parallel vertical and horizontal lines. Its Auto setting attempts to fix perspective errors, but you can choose to align only verticals or only horizontals, or mess with the perspective to taste with transforming sliders for pincushion and barrel distortion, vertical, horizontal, and aspect ratio.
As mentioned, you can use Camera Raw as a filter, applying all its manifold photo adjustments—color temperature, exposure, geometry, all of it—to any image layer, not just to raw camera files. You can apply Camera Raw adjustments to videos, too, and use a non-circular healing brush. As in Lightroom, you also get a radial filter that lets you apply the adjustments to an oval shape, such as a person’s head.
The world’s best image editing software adds mind-blowing neural filters, automatic sky replacement, Adobe Photoshop 23.4.2 Crack and even better selection tools.